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1.
J Immunol ; 208(8): 1989-1997, 2022 Apr 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1776403

ABSTRACT

Regulatory T cells (Tregs) are critical for regulating immunopathogenic responses in a variety of infections, including infection of mice with JHM strain of mouse hepatitis virus (JHMV), a neurotropic coronavirus that causes immune-mediated demyelinating disease. Although virus-specific Tregs are known to mitigate disease in this infection by suppressing pathogenic effector T cell responses of the same specificity, it is unclear whether these virus-specific Tregs form memory populations and persist similar to their conventional T cell counterparts of the same epitope specificity. Using congenically labeled JHMV-specific Tregs, we found that virus-specific Tregs persist long-term after murine infection, through at least 180 d postinfection and stably maintain Foxp3 expression. We additionally demonstrate that these cells are better able to proliferate and inhibit virus-specific T cell responses postinfection than naive Tregs of the same specificity, further suggesting that these cells differentiate into memory Tregs upon encountering cognate Ag. Taken together, these data suggest that virus-specific Tregs are able to persist long-term in the absence of viral Ag as memory Tregs.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections , Murine hepatitis virus , Animals , Antigens, Viral , Mice , T-Lymphocytes, Regulatory
2.
J Virol ; 96(3): e0184221, 2022 02 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1691423

ABSTRACT

Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) is a beta coronavirus that emerged in 2012, causing severe pneumonia and renal failure. MERS-CoV encodes five accessory proteins. Some of them have been shown to interfere with host antiviral immune response. However, the roles of protein 8b in innate immunity and viral virulence was rarely studied. Here, we introduced individual MERS-CoV accessory protein genes into the genome of an attenuated murine coronavirus (Mouse hepatitis virus, MHV), respectively, and found accessory protein 8b could enhance viral replication in vivo and in vitro and increase the lethality of infected mice. RNA-seq analysis revealed that protein 8b could significantly inhibit type I interferon production (IFN-I) and innate immune response in mice infected with MHV expressing protein 8b. We also found that MERS-CoV protein 8b could initiate from multiple internal methionine sites and at least three protein variants were identified. Residues 1-23 of protein 8b was demonstrated to be responsible for increased virulence in vivo. In addition, the inhibitory effect on IFN-I of protein 8b might not contribute to its virulence enhancement as aa1-23 deletion did not affect IFN-I production in vitro and in vivo. Next, we also found that protein 8b was localized to the endoplasmic reticulum (ER)/Golgi membrane in infected cells, which was disrupted by C-terminal region aa 88-112 deletion. This study will provide new insight into the pathogenesis of MERS-CoV infection. IMPORTANCE Multiple coronaviruses (CoV) cause severe respiratory infections and become global public health threats such as SARS-CoV, MERS-CoV, and SARS-CoV-2. Each coronavirus contains different numbers of accessory proteins which show high variability among different CoVs. Accessory proteins are demonstrated to play essential roles in pathogenesis of CoVs. MERS-CoV contains 5 accessory proteins (protein 3, 4a, 4b, 5, 8b), and deletion of all four accessory proteins (protein 3, 4a, 4b, 5), significantly affects MERS-CoV replication and pathogenesis. However, whether ORF8b also regulates MERS-CoV infection is unknown. Here, we constructed mouse hepatitis virus (MHV) recombinant virus expressing MERS-CoV protein 8b and demonstrated protein 8b could significantly enhance the virulence of MHV, which is mediated by N-terminal domain of protein 8b. This study will shed light on the understanding of pathogenesis of MERS-CoV infection.


Subject(s)
Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus/physiology , Murine hepatitis virus/physiology , Protein Interaction Domains and Motifs , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/genetics , Animals , Coronavirus Infections/immunology , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Host-Pathogen Interactions/immunology , Immunity, Innate , Mice , Mortality , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/chemistry , Viral Tropism , Virulence/genetics , Virulence Factors/genetics
3.
Genome Res ; 32(2): 228-241, 2022 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1642462

ABSTRACT

The pathogenesis of COVID-19 is still elusive, which impedes disease progression prediction, differential diagnosis, and targeted therapy. Plasma cell-free RNAs (cfRNAs) carry unique information from human tissue and thus could point to resourceful solutions for pathogenesis and host-pathogen interactions. Here, we performed a comparative analysis of cfRNA profiles between COVID-19 patients and healthy donors using serial plasma. Analyses of the cfRNA landscape, potential gene regulatory mechanisms, dynamic changes in tRNA pools upon infection, and microbial communities were performed. A total of 380 cfRNA molecules were up-regulated in all COVID-19 patients, of which seven could serve as potential biomarkers (AUC > 0.85) with great sensitivity and specificity. Antiviral (NFKB1A, IFITM3, and IFI27) and neutrophil activation (S100A8, CD68, and CD63)-related genes exhibited decreased expression levels during treatment in COVID-19 patients, which is in accordance with the dynamically enhanced inflammatory response in COVID-19 patients. Noncoding RNAs, including some microRNAs (let 7 family) and long noncoding RNAs (GJA9-MYCBP) targeting interleukin (IL6/IL6R), were differentially expressed between COVID-19 patients and healthy donors, which accounts for the potential core mechanism of cytokine storm syndromes; the tRNA pools change significantly between the COVID-19 and healthy group, leading to the accumulation of SARS-CoV-2 biased codons, which facilitate SARS-CoV-2 replication. Finally, several pneumonia-related microorganisms were detected in the plasma of COVID-19 patients, raising the possibility of simultaneously monitoring immune response regulation and microbial communities using cfRNA analysis. This study fills the knowledge gap in the plasma cfRNA landscape of COVID-19 patients and offers insight into the potential mechanisms of cfRNAs to explain COVID-19 pathogenesis.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Cell-Free Nucleic Acids , RNA/blood , COVID-19/blood , COVID-19/genetics , Cell-Free Nucleic Acids/blood , Cytokine Release Syndrome , Humans , SARS-CoV-2
5.
Emerg Microbes Infect ; 11(1): 168-171, 2022 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1623181

ABSTRACT

HCoV-OC43 is one of the mildly pathogenic coronaviruses with high infection rates in common population. Here, 43 HCoV-OC43 related cases with pneumonia were reported, corresponding genomes of HCoV-OC43 were obtained. Phylogenetic analyses based on complete genome, orf1ab and spike genes revealed that two novel genotypes of HCoV-OC43 have emerged in China. Obvious recombinant events also can be detected in the analysis of the evolutionary dynamics of novel HCoV-OC43 genotypes. Estimated divergence time analysis indicated that the two novel genotypes had apparently independent evolutionary routes. Efforts should be conducted for further investigation of genomic diversity and evolution analysis of mildly pathogenic coronaviruses.


Subject(s)
Common Cold/epidemiology , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Coronavirus OC43, Human/genetics , Genome, Viral , Genotype , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Base Sequence , Bayes Theorem , Child , Child, Hospitalized , Child, Preschool , China/epidemiology , Common Cold/pathology , Common Cold/transmission , Common Cold/virology , Coronavirus Infections/pathology , Coronavirus Infections/transmission , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Coronavirus OC43, Human/classification , Coronavirus OC43, Human/pathogenicity , Epidemiological Monitoring , Female , Humans , Infant , Male , Monte Carlo Method , Mutation , Phylogeny , Pneumonia, Viral/pathology , Pneumonia, Viral/transmission , Pneumonia, Viral/virology , Recombination, Genetic
6.
Cell Discov ; 7(1): 65, 2021 Aug 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1569241

ABSTRACT

The current COVID-19 pandemic, caused by SARS-CoV-2, poses a serious public health threat. Effective therapeutic and prophylactic treatments are urgently needed. Angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) is a functional receptor for SARS-CoV-2, which binds to the receptor binding domain (RBD) of SARS-CoV-2 spike protein. Here, we developed recombinant human ACE2-Fc fusion protein (hACE2-Fc) and a hACE2-Fc mutant with reduced catalytic activity. hACE2-Fc and the hACE2-Fc mutant both efficiently blocked entry of SARS-CoV-2, SARS-CoV, and HCoV-NL63 into hACE2-expressing cells and inhibited SARS-CoV-2 S protein-mediated cell-cell fusion. hACE2-Fc also neutralized various SARS-CoV-2 strains with enhanced infectivity including D614G and V367F mutations, as well as the emerging SARS-CoV-2 variants, B.1.1.7 (Alpha), B.1.351 (Beta), B.1.617.1 (Kappa), and B.1.617.2 (Delta), demonstrating its potent and broad-spectrum antiviral effects. In addition, hACE2-Fc proteins protected HBE from SARS-CoV-2 infection. Unlike RBD-targeting neutralizing antibodies, hACE2-Fc treatment did not induce the development of escape mutants. Furthermore, both prophylactic and therapeutic hACE2-Fc treatments effectively protected mice from SARS-CoV-2 infection, as determined by reduced viral replication, weight loss, histological changes, and inflammation in the lungs. The protection provided by hACE2 showed obvious dose-dependent efficacy in vivo. Pharmacokinetic data indicated that hACE2-Fc has a relative long half-life in vivo compared to soluble ACE2, which makes it an excellent candidate for prophylaxis and therapy for COVID-19 as well as for SARS-CoV and HCoV-NL63 infections.

7.
J Virol ; 96(3): e0184221, 2022 02 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1532965

ABSTRACT

Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) is a beta coronavirus that emerged in 2012, causing severe pneumonia and renal failure. MERS-CoV encodes five accessory proteins. Some of them have been shown to interfere with host antiviral immune response. However, the roles of protein 8b in innate immunity and viral virulence was rarely studied. Here, we introduced individual MERS-CoV accessory protein genes into the genome of an attenuated murine coronavirus (Mouse hepatitis virus, MHV), respectively, and found accessory protein 8b could enhance viral replication in vivo and in vitro and increase the lethality of infected mice. RNA-seq analysis revealed that protein 8b could significantly inhibit type I interferon production (IFN-I) and innate immune response in mice infected with MHV expressing protein 8b. We also found that MERS-CoV protein 8b could initiate from multiple internal methionine sites and at least three protein variants were identified. Residues 1-23 of protein 8b was demonstrated to be responsible for increased virulence in vivo. In addition, the inhibitory effect on IFN-I of protein 8b might not contribute to its virulence enhancement as aa1-23 deletion did not affect IFN-I production in vitro and in vivo. Next, we also found that protein 8b was localized to the endoplasmic reticulum (ER)/Golgi membrane in infected cells, which was disrupted by C-terminal region aa 88-112 deletion. This study will provide new insight into the pathogenesis of MERS-CoV infection. IMPORTANCE Multiple coronaviruses (CoV) cause severe respiratory infections and become global public health threats such as SARS-CoV, MERS-CoV, and SARS-CoV-2. Each coronavirus contains different numbers of accessory proteins which show high variability among different CoVs. Accessory proteins are demonstrated to play essential roles in pathogenesis of CoVs. MERS-CoV contains 5 accessory proteins (protein 3, 4a, 4b, 5, 8b), and deletion of all four accessory proteins (protein 3, 4a, 4b, 5), significantly affects MERS-CoV replication and pathogenesis. However, whether ORF8b also regulates MERS-CoV infection is unknown. Here, we constructed mouse hepatitis virus (MHV) recombinant virus expressing MERS-CoV protein 8b and demonstrated protein 8b could significantly enhance the virulence of MHV, which is mediated by N-terminal domain of protein 8b. This study will shed light on the understanding of pathogenesis of MERS-CoV infection.


Subject(s)
Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus/physiology , Murine hepatitis virus/physiology , Protein Interaction Domains and Motifs , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/genetics , Animals , Coronavirus Infections/immunology , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Host-Pathogen Interactions/immunology , Immunity, Innate , Mice , Mortality , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/chemistry , Viral Tropism , Virulence/genetics , Virulence Factors/genetics
8.
Front Immunol ; 12: 724763, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1399141

ABSTRACT

Characterizing the serologic features of asymptomatic SARS-CoV-2 infection is imperative to improve diagnostics and control of SARS-CoV-2 transmission. In this study, we evaluated the antibody profiles in 272 plasma samples collected from 59 COVID-19 patients, consisting of 18 asymptomatic patients, 33 mildly ill patients and 8 severely ill patients. We measured the IgG against five viral structural proteins, different isotypes of immunoglobulins against the Receptor Binding Domain (RBD) protein, and neutralizing antibodies. The results showed that the overall antibody response was lower in asymptomatic infections than in symptomatic infections throughout the disease course. In contrast to symptomatic patients, asymptomatic patients showed a dominant IgG-response towards the RBD protein, but not IgM and IgA. Neutralizing antibody titers had linear correlations with IgA/IgM/IgG levels against SARS-CoV-2-RBD, as well as with IgG levels against multiple SARS-CoV-2 structural proteins, especially with anti-RBD or anti-S2 IgG. In addition, the sensitivity of anti-S2-IgG is better in identifying asymptomatic infections at early time post infection compared to anti-RBD-IgG. These data suggest that asymptomatic infections elicit weaker antibody responses, and primarily induce IgG antibody responses rather than IgA or IgM antibody responses. Detection of IgG against the S2 protein could supplement nucleic acid testing to identify asymptomatic patients. This study provides an antibody detection scheme for asymptomatic infections, which may contribute to epidemic prevention and control.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/blood , Asymptomatic Infections , Immunoglobulin G/blood , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Viral Structural Proteins/immunology , Adolescent , Adult , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/physiology , Binding Sites, Antibody , Female , Humans , Immunoglobulin G/classification , Immunoglobulin M/immunology , Kinetics , Male , Middle Aged , Neutralization Tests/statistics & numerical data , SARS-CoV-2/chemistry , Young Adult
9.
Signal Transduct Target Ther ; 6(1): 155, 2021 04 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1189204

ABSTRACT

Disease progression prediction and therapeutic drug target discovery for Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) are particularly important, as there is still no effective strategy for severe COVID-19 patient treatment. Herein, we performed multi-platform omics analysis of serial plasma and urine samples collected from patients during the course of COVID-19. Integrative analyses of these omics data revealed several potential therapeutic targets, such as ANXA1 and CLEC3B. Molecular changes in plasma indicated dysregulation of macrophage and suppression of T cell functions in severe patients compared to those in non-severe patients. Further, we chose 25 important molecular signatures as potential biomarkers for the prediction of disease severity. The prediction power was validated using corresponding urine samples and plasma samples from new COVID-19 patient cohort, with AUC reached to 0.904 and 0.988, respectively. In conclusion, our omics data proposed not only potential therapeutic targets, but also biomarkers for understanding the pathogenesis of severe COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/blood , COVID-19/drug therapy , Drug Discovery , Lipidomics , Proteomics , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Biomarkers/blood , Female , Humans , Male
10.
Cell Discov ; 7(1): 23, 2021 Apr 13.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1182823

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has caused a global pandemic of Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). However, the microbial composition of the respiratory tract and other infected tissues as well as their possible pathogenic contributions to varying degrees of disease severity in COVID-19 patients remain unclear. Between 27 January and 26 February 2020, serial clinical specimens (sputum, nasal and throat swab, anal swab and feces) were collected from a cohort of hospitalized COVID-19 patients, including 8 mildly and 15 severely ill patients in Guangdong province, China. Total RNA was extracted and ultra-deep metatranscriptomic sequencing was performed in combination with laboratory diagnostic assays. We identified distinct signatures of microbial dysbiosis among severely ill COVID-19 patients on broad spectrum antimicrobial therapy. Co-detection of other human respiratory viruses (including human alphaherpesvirus 1, rhinovirus B, and human orthopneumovirus) was demonstrated in 30.8% (4/13) of the severely ill patients, but not in any of the mildly affected patients. Notably, the predominant respiratory microbial taxa of severely ill patients were Burkholderia cepacia complex (BCC), Staphylococcus epidermidis, or Mycoplasma spp. (including M. hominis and M. orale). The presence of the former two bacterial taxa was also confirmed by clinical cultures of respiratory specimens (expectorated sputum or nasal secretions) in 23.1% (3/13) of the severe cases. Finally, a time-dependent, secondary infection of B. cenocepacia with expressions of multiple virulence genes was demonstrated in one severely ill patient, which might accelerate his disease deterioration and death occurring one month after ICU admission. Our findings point to SARS-CoV-2-related microbial dysbiosis and various antibiotic-resistant respiratory microbes/pathogens in hospitalized COVID-19 patients in relation to disease severity. Detection and tracking strategies are needed to prevent the spread of antimicrobial resistance, improve the treatment regimen and clinical outcomes of hospitalized, severely ill COVID-19 patients.

11.
Lancet Infect Dis ; 21(3): 385-395, 2021 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1162009

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) remains of global public health concern. Dromedary camels are the source of zoonotic infection. Over 70% of MERS coronavirus (MERS-CoV)-infected dromedaries are found in Africa but no zoonotic disease has been reported in Africa. We aimed to understand whether individuals with exposure to dromedaries in Africa had been infected by MERS-CoV. METHODS: Workers slaughtering dromedaries in an abattoir in Kano, Nigeria, were compared with abattoir workers without direct dromedary contact, non-abattoir workers from Kano, and controls from Guangzhou, China. Exposure to dromedaries was ascertained using a questionnaire. Serum and peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) were tested for MERS-CoV specific neutralising antibody and T-cell responses. FINDINGS: None of the participants from Nigeria or Guangdong were MERS-CoV seropositive. 18 (30%) of 61 abattoir workers with exposure to dromedaries, but none of 20 abattoir workers without exposure (p=0·0042), ten non-abattoir workers or 24 controls from Guangzhou (p=0·0002) had evidence of MERS-CoV-specific CD4+ or CD8+ T cells in PBMC. T-cell responses to other endemic human coronaviruses (229E, OC43, HKU-1, and NL-63) were observed in all groups with no association with dromedary exposure. Drinking both unpasteurised camel milk and camel urine was significantly and negatively associated with T-cell positivity (odds ratio 0·07, 95% CI 0·01-0·54). INTERPRETATION: Zoonotic infection of dromedary-exposed individuals is taking place in Nigeria and suggests that the extent of MERS-CoV infections in Africa is underestimated. MERS-CoV could therefore adapt to human transmission in Africa rather than the Arabian Peninsula, where attention is currently focused. FUNDING: The National Science and Technology Major Project, National Institutes of Health.


Subject(s)
Camelus/immunology , Coronavirus Infections/immunology , Coronavirus Infections/veterinary , Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus/immunology , Occupational Exposure/statistics & numerical data , T-Lymphocytes/immunology , Zoonoses/epidemiology , Zoonoses/immunology , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , Animals , Antibodies, Neutralizing , CD4-Positive T-Lymphocytes/immunology , CD8-Positive T-Lymphocytes/immunology , Camelus/virology , Cohort Studies , Coronavirus Infections/transmission , Female , Humans , Leukocytes, Mononuclear/immunology , Male , Middle Aged , Nigeria/epidemiology , Young Adult , Zoonoses/transmission , Zoonoses/virology
12.
Front Med (Lausanne) ; 8: 585358, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1116697

ABSTRACT

The emergence of the novel human coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2, causes a global COVID-19 (coronavirus disease 2019) pandemic. Here, we have characterized and compared viral populations of SARS-CoV-2 among COVID-19 patients within and across households. Our work showed an active viral replication activity in the human respiratory tract and the co-existence of genetically distinct viruses within the same host. The inter-host comparison among viral populations further revealed a narrow transmission bottleneck between patients from the same households, suggesting a dominated role of stochastic dynamics in both inter-host and intra-host evolutions.

13.
Fundamental Research ; 2021.
Article in English | ScienceDirect | ID: covidwho-1116731

ABSTRACT

The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) represents a major public health threat worldwide. Insight into protective and pathogenic aspects of SARS-CoV-2 immune responses is critical to work out effective therapeutics and develop vaccines for controlling the disease. Here, we review the present literature describing the innate and adaptive immune responses including innate immune cells, cytokine responses, antibody responses and T cell responses against SARS-CoV-2 in human infection, as well as in AEC2-humanized mouse infection. We also summarize the now known and unknown about the role of the SARS-CoV-2 immune responses. By better understanding the mechanisms that drive the immune responses, we can tailor treatment strategies at specific disease stages and improve our response to this worldwide public health threat.

14.
Genome Med ; 13(1): 30, 2021 02 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1097198

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Since early February 2021, the causative agent of COVID-19, SARS-CoV-2, has infected over 104 million people with more than 2 million deaths according to official reports. The key to understanding the biology and virus-host interactions of SARS-CoV-2 requires the knowledge of mutation and evolution of this virus at both inter- and intra-host levels. However, despite quite a few polymorphic sites identified among SARS-CoV-2 populations, intra-host variant spectra and their evolutionary dynamics remain mostly unknown. METHODS: Using high-throughput sequencing of metatranscriptomic and hybrid captured libraries, we characterized consensus genomes and intra-host single nucleotide variations (iSNVs) of serial samples collected from eight patients with COVID-19. The distribution of iSNVs along the SARS-CoV-2 genome was analyzed and co-occurring iSNVs among COVID-19 patients were identified. We also compared the evolutionary dynamics of SARS-CoV-2 population in the respiratory tract (RT) and gastrointestinal tract (GIT). RESULTS: The 32 consensus genomes revealed the co-existence of different genotypes within the same patient. We further identified 40 intra-host single nucleotide variants (iSNVs). Most (30/40) iSNVs presented in a single patient, while ten iSNVs were found in at least two patients or identical to consensus variants. Comparing allele frequencies of the iSNVs revealed a clear genetic differentiation between intra-host populations from the respiratory tract (RT) and gastrointestinal tract (GIT), mostly driven by bottleneck events during intra-host migrations. Compared to RT populations, the GIT populations showed a better maintenance and rapid development of viral genetic diversity following the suspected intra-host bottlenecks. CONCLUSIONS: Our findings here illustrate the intra-host bottlenecks and evolutionary dynamics of SARS-CoV-2 in different anatomic sites and may provide new insights to understand the virus-host interactions of coronaviruses and other RNA viruses.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/prevention & control , Genome, Viral/genetics , High-Throughput Nucleotide Sequencing/methods , Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , COVID-19/virology , Gene Frequency , Genotype , Haplotypes , Host-Pathogen Interactions , Humans , Phylogeny , SARS-CoV-2/classification , SARS-CoV-2/physiology
15.
J Thorac Dis ; 12(12): 7454-7466, 2020 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1068180

ABSTRACT

Two outbreaks of severe respiratory infection caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV) and the Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) caused global pandemics and highlighted the importance of preparedness for respiratory CoVs. Recently, a third highly pathogenic CoV, severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), was first identified in Wuhan, Hubei, China and posed a public health crisis worldwide. Here, we focus on the recent advances of the novel CoV, and discuss its genomic similarity with other CoVs, transmission, animal model and clinical treatment of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) induced by SARS-CoV-2, which help epidemic prevention and control, and guide treatment strategies.

16.
J Exp Med ; 218(4)2021 04 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1035695

ABSTRACT

Virus-specific T cells play essential roles in protection against multiple virus infections, including SARS-CoV and MERS-CoV. While SARS-CoV-2-specific T cells have been identified in COVID-19 patients, their role in the protection of SARS-CoV-2-infected mice is not established. Here, using mice sensitized for infection with SARS-CoV-2 by transduction with an adenovirus expressing the human receptor (Ad5-hACE2), we identified SARS-CoV-2-specific T cell epitopes recognized by CD4+ and CD8+ T cells in BALB/c and C57BL/6 mice. Virus-specific T cells were polyfunctional and were able to lyse target cells in vivo. Further, type I interferon pathway was proved to be critical for generating optimal antiviral T cell responses after SARS-CoV-2 infection. T cell vaccination alone partially protected SARS-CoV-2-infected mice from severe disease. In addition, the results demonstrated cross-reactive T cell responses between SARS-CoV and SARS-CoV-2, but not MERS-CoV, in mice. Understanding the role of the T cell response will guide immunopathogenesis studies of COVID-19 and vaccine design and validation.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/immunology , Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte/immunology , Host-Pathogen Interactions/physiology , T-Lymphocytes/immunology , T-Lymphocytes/virology , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Animals , Antibodies, Neutralizing/blood , CD4-Positive T-Lymphocytes/virology , CD8-Positive T-Lymphocytes/virology , Chlorocebus aethiops , Cross Reactions , Epitope Mapping , Interferon Type I/immunology , Interferon Type I/metabolism , Mice, Inbred BALB C , Mice, Inbred C57BL , Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus/immunology , SARS Virus/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Vero Cells
17.
J Clin Invest ; 130(10): 5235-5244, 2020 10 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-969923

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is the causative agent for coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) pneumonia. Little is known about the kinetics, tissue distribution, cross-reactivity, and neutralization antibody response in patients with COVID-19. Two groups of patients with RT-PCR-confirmed COVID-19 were enrolled in this study: 12 severely ill patients in intensive care units who needed mechanical ventilation and 11 mildly ill patients in isolation wards. Serial clinical samples were collected for laboratory detection. Results showed that most of the severely ill patients had viral shedding in a variety of tissues for 20-40 days after onset of disease (8/12, 66.7%), while the majority of mildly ill patients had viral shedding restricted to the respiratory tract and had no detectable virus RNA 10 days after onset (9/11, 81.8%). Mildly ill patients showed significantly lower IgM response compared with that of the severe group. IgG responses were detected in most patients in both the severe and mild groups at 9 days after onset, and remained at a high level throughout the study. Antibodies cross-reactive to SARS-CoV and SARS-CoV-2 were detected in patients with COVID-19 but not in patients with MERS. High levels of neutralizing antibodies were induced after about 10 days after onset in both severely and mildly ill patients which were higher in the severe group. SARS-CoV-2 pseudotype neutralization test and focus reduction neutralization test with authentic virus showed consistent results. Sera from patients with COVID-19 inhibited SARS-CoV-2 entry. Sera from convalescent patients with SARS or Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) did not. Anti-SARS-CoV-2 S and N IgG levels exhibited a moderate correlation with neutralization titers in patients' plasma. This study improves our understanding of immune response in humans after SARS-CoV-2 infection.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/blood , Betacoronavirus/metabolism , Coronavirus Infections/blood , Pneumonia, Viral/blood , Viral Load , Virus Shedding , Adult , Aged , Antibody Specificity , COVID-19 , Cross Reactions , Female , Humans , Kinetics , Male , Middle Aged , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Severity of Illness Index
18.
Microbiol Resour Announc ; 9(8)2020 Feb 20.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-833422

ABSTRACT

We report the complete genome sequences of five human coronavirus NL63 (HCoV-NL63) strains obtained using next-generation sequencing. The five HCoV-NL63 strains were obtained from hospitalized children with severe acute respiratory infection detected in Guangdong, China. This study provides several complete genomes of HCoV-NL63 and improves our understanding of HCoV-NL63 evolution in China.

19.
Emerg Microbes Infect ; 9(1): 246-255, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-774889

ABSTRACT

Human coronavirus NL63 (HCoV-NL63) is primarily associated with common cold in children, elderly and immunocompromised individuals. Outbreaks caused by HCoV-NL63 are rare. Here we report a cluster of HCoV-NL63 cases with severe lower respiratory tract infection that arose in Guangzhou, China, in 2018. Twenty-three hospitalized children were confirmed to be HCoV-NL63 positive, and most of whom were hospitalized with severe pneumonia or acute bronchitis. Whole genomes of HCoV-NL63 were obtained using next-generation sequencing. Phylogenetic and single amino acid polymorphism analyses showed that this outbreak was associated with two subgenotypes (C3 and B) of HCoV-NL63. Half of patients were identified to be related to a new subgenotype C3. One unique amino acid mutation at I507 L in spike protein receptor binding domain (RBD) was detected, which segregated this subgenotype C3 from other known subgenotypes. Pseudotyped virus bearing the I507 L mutation in RBD showed enhanced entry into host cells as compared to the prototype virus. This study proved that HCoV-NL63 was undergoing continuous mutation and has the potential to cause severe lower respiratory disease in humans.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections , Coronavirus NL63, Human/genetics , Respiratory Tract Infections/virology , Child, Preschool , China , Coronavirus NL63, Human/isolation & purification , Genotype , Humans , Infant , Phylogeny
20.
J Virol ; 94(15)2020 07 16.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-762192

ABSTRACT

Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) causes severe acute respiratory disease in humans. MERS-CoV strains from early epidemic clade A and contemporary epidemic clade B have not been phenotypically characterized to compare their abilities to infect cells and mice. We isolated the clade B MERS-CoV ChinaGD01 strain from a patient infected during the South Korean MERS outbreak in 2015 and compared the phylogenetics and pathogenicity of MERS-CoV EMC/2012 (clade A) and ChinaGD01 (clade B) in vitro and in vivo Genome alignment analysis showed that most clade-specific mutations occurred in the orf1ab gene, including mutations that were predicted to be potential glycosylation sites. Minor differences in viral growth but no significant differences in plaque size or sensitivity to beta interferon (IFN-ß) were detected between these two viruses in vitro ChinaGD01 virus infection induced more weight loss and inflammatory cytokine production in human DPP4-transduced mice. Viral titers were higher in the lungs of ChinaGD01-infected mice than with EMC/2012 infection. Decreased virus-specific CD4+ and CD8+ T cell numbers were detected in the lungs of ChinaGD01-infected mice. In conclusion, MERS-CoV evolution induced changes to reshape its pathogenicity and virulence in vitro and in vivo and to evade adaptive immune response to hinder viral clearance.IMPORTANCE MERS-CoV is an important emerging pathogen and causes severe respiratory infection in humans. MERS-CoV strains from early epidemic clade A and contemporary epidemic clade B have not been phenotypically characterized to compare their abilities to infect cells and mice. In this study, we showed that a clade B virus ChinaGD01 strain caused more severe disease in mice, with delayed viral clearance, increased inflammatory cytokines, and decreased antiviral T cell responses, than the early clade A virus EMC/2012. Given the differences in pathogenicity of different clades of MERS-CoV, periodic assessment of currently circulating MERS-CoV is needed to monitor potential severity of zoonotic disease.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/virology , Genotype , Host-Pathogen Interactions , Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus/physiology , Adult , Animals , Disease Models, Animal , Genome, Viral , Host-Pathogen Interactions/immunology , Humans , Interferon Type I/pharmacology , Male , Mice , Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus/classification , Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus/isolation & purification , Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus/pathogenicity , Phylogeny , RNA, Viral , T-Lymphocytes/immunology , T-Lymphocytes/metabolism , Virulence , Virus Replication/drug effects , Virus Replication/genetics , Whole Genome Sequencing
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